Mosque Left Standing After Tsunami Becomes Pilgrimage Site

January 28, 2005

Source: The Boston Globe

On January 28, 2005 The Boston Globe reported, "Just to the north of the mosque at the tip of this northern Sumatra city, the waves of the Indian Ocean gently lap the shore. In every other direction, all the way to the horizon, lie the ruins from last month's tsunami. Somehow, the Baiturrahim Mosque stands. Many in Banda Aceh call it 'ground zero' of the tsunami. Its astonishing survival draws hundreds of people every day to take pictures, to stare, and to pray. Some are volunteers who came from all over Indonesia and the world to help the survivors. Some are people who once lived near here in the Ulee-Lheue (pronounced ul-lay-LAY) neighborhood. And some are tourists. This may be the disaster's first tourist site -- or its first pilgrimage destination."